How to Register Motorcycles, Boats, and More in Indiana
The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) requires all motor vehicles to be registered and properly titled. Motor vehicles include motorcycles, boats, RVs, motorhomes, and others. Anyone caught driving a motor vehicle without proper registration and title will be cited. If you have taken residency in Indiana and owned a vehicle, you can transfer your registration and title. It must be done within a time after moving into the state.
Other Indiana Vehicle Registrations
To register a motorcycle at the Indiana BMV, you must provide some documents to complete the process. To register your motorcycle, submit your application, proof of insurance, license, and fees. Registration can be done online or in person.
To do it online, submit the titling application first. You will have up to 60 days to complete the registration before you are charged a late fee. At this time, after 60 days have passed, you must do the registration in person.
If you bought your motorcycle from a dealer, all the documents are sent to the Indiana BMV office. You will receive your title and registration card in the mail.
Private Seller Purchase
When you buy from a private seller, you must apply for registration. Before you apply, you must complete the title transfer first. Only then you can apply for your motorcycle registration.
Motorcycle Registration Fees
The Indiana BMV charges fees and taxes to register a motorcycle. When you purchase from a dealership, these charges are in the sales prices; therefore, you don’t need to submit any documents. However, buying from a private seller is not the same. You must pay the excise tax when you register your motorcycle.
The BMV will charge these fees for registration:
- Registration: $26.35
- Duplicate registration certificate: $9.50
- Duplicate license plate sticker: $9.50
- Changes to your registration: $9.50
- Motor Vehicle Excise Tax: varies on the motorcycle’s age and value
- Surtax: varies per county
Not every vessel should be registered at the Indiana BMV. For instance, non-motorized boats, ship lifeboats, boats registered outside the state that are temporarily used in state, and non-resident boats registered in another state. So, motorized boats 13 feet and longer should get registered.
Boat Title & Registration at the Indiana BMV
You will have up to 45 days after purchasing a boat to title and register it. To do so, you must submit at the BMV:
- A complete Application for Certification of Watercraft Title (Form 38529)
- Proof of ownership
- The Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin
- Boat’s title
- Driver’s license
- State ID
- Social Security Card
- Document regarding payment of sales or use tax
- If you paid the tax (Certificate of Gross Retail or Use Tax Paid on the Purchase of a Motor Vehicle or Watercraft) (Form 48842)
- Exempt from paying tax (Certificate of Gross Retail or Use Tax Exemption for the Purchase of a Motor Vehicle or Watercraft) (Form 48841)
- Pay Fees
Boat Title & Registration Fees
The Indiana BMV will charge fees based on the length of your boat. So, here are the costs you will pay for:
- original or renewal registration:
- 12 ft or less: $15
- 13 ft and up to 25 ft: $18
- 26 ft and up to 39 ft: $21
- 40 ft and longer: $24
- Original, corrected, or replacement title: $15
- Duplicate registration: $9.50
- Department of Natural Resources annual fee: $5
- Watercraft Excise Tax: depends on the vessel’s age and class
- Lake and River Enhancement fee: varies on boat excise class
- Sales tax:
- 7% for the state
- Varies by county
Off-Road Vehicle Registration & Title
Most off-road vehicles in Indiana are not required for titling. Unless you drive it on the roadways, then you must title your vehicle. In Indiana, off-road vehicles like the ones on the list below are not required for titling. These vehicles include:
- Farm vehicles
- Construction, mining, or other related vehicles
- Golf carts
Like titling, registration is not necessary for off-road vehicles. However, if you will use the roadways, then you must register your vehicle. Before you register your car, you must title it first.
You can title and register your vehicle online or in person. To do so online, you must title within 45 days of purchase or pay the fine for late titling.
Motorhomes & RVs Registration
You are required to register your motorhomes and RVs in Indiana. The process for registration is the same as if you were registering a car. Provide documents similar to your car registration to register your RVs and motorhomes.